Spouse make you feel like the bad guy?

iVillage Member
Registered: 06-03-2003
Spouse make you feel like the bad guy?
Wed, 06-04-2003 - 11:23am
Hi. I'm new to this support group, but I've already read a few good ideas. But I was wondering if anyone else's husband/wife makes them feel like the "bad guy." I was married a month ago and we're in so much debt. Like many of you, we've always had credit cards to fall back on, but now they're maxed out. And the guy my husband works for hasn't been able to pay him in 2 months. It's just overwhelming. I had such good credit until we got together and he has such BAD credit. And he's always doing things to try to feel successful in managing money (like getting a small $250 credit card or opening a bank account). But the account was soon closed because he always was "floating" checks with no money coming in and the credit card is up to $450!! How does that happen? Something is always happening and he always wants me to "rescue" him. And lately, he'll just take my bank cards or whatever because he knew I'd say no if he asked. Am I wrong for feeling taken advantage of?

Throughout our courtship I saved his butt a lot... including helping him get a car. Paying off his credit cards only to turn around and get a statement showing 10 cash advances to max it out again. It's so sad to now be getting denied for things when I am the responsible one. Ok, back to the point of me being the bad guy. My husband feels like I'm anal, or freak out about money. After Memorial Day he said "I wanted to take a short trip, but I didn't even suggest it because I didn't want to hear your mouth." We have no money, we're months behind in bills, we have almost $60,000 in debt. It's not my mouth, it's reality! I feel alone in it. I mean, he still wants to go out to eat all the time. He has a different approach to money I guess. But he wants a digital camera and he wants this and that. I feel like he's my child that I keep having to say no to. It really is draining to ALWAYS be the responsible head and have to say no. I don't like feeling like the bad guy.

I manage the money. He's tried to, and for lack of a better word... failed. But at least he acknowledges that. But he gives me the paychecks he gets and I pay bills out of one account with my name on it only. That way -- at least until we get our heads above water -- I can monitor where our money's going. But then he feels like he always has to ask me for money because he gives it all to me. I can understand how he feels always having to suck up his pride and ask for things, but I feel like all my money and paycheck goes to bills. Why shouldn't his. Am I wrong? He spends it if he has it.

It's gotten to the point where there's no faking it anymore. We're broke as a joke. And we both know it and don't really fight about it much anymore. But every day, I still have to say... no. We have no money. Remember.

Does anyone have any insight?

Thanks and sorry for the rambling.

- Stephanie

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-09-2003
Wed, 06-04-2003 - 2:10pm
I feel for you. You have to get him to realize how serious it is. We went through the same things for months, to a lesser degree anyway. We let credit save us because my wife's company was being bought out and she wasn't getting paid regularly. Well, to make a long story short, things never got better financially and we had to file bankruptcy. So before there's no other choice, get him to realize that he has to help fix the problem, or you'll be filing for divorce. Call the credit card companies and close the accounts if you can. Do whatever you have to do so that you don't run up more credit. Good luck.
iVillage Member
Registered: 06-02-2003
Wed, 06-04-2003 - 5:56pm
Hi, Stephanie. It sounds like you are the one experiencing all the stress in the situation, and DH is in blissful denial. I would probably list everything out, including how long you expect that it will take to pay off the debts you currently have. This might be a shocker, but that might be what it takes.

It seems like he is spending without regard to the consequences. That as long as there is an open credit card or a checkbook, money is always available. That is not a realistic way to be, and honestly, without him changing his spending habits, I don't know how the situation could get better.

It might help to get him to think about long-term. Where do the two of you want to be financially in 5 years? in 10? Do you have goals of where you'd like to live or investment opportunities or starting your own business ever? Come up with some goals, and use these as a focus.

Even though he might make you feel like the "bad guy", I think that you need to take a stand and remain firm about how much money the two of you can afford to "spend". He might be good at making you feel guilty, but YOU are not the one taking anything away from him. You can stress to him that the debts you have is money you already owe.

If he keeps spending carelessly, with that amount of debt already, what good could possibly come out of it? We've struggled a lot lately, and for the first time in my life I've read information about bankruptcy. I know that it is literally a last resort, and I wouldn't consider it an option unless it is the ONLY way. Maybe DH thinks that bankruptcy some day is a solution. Ask him what he thinks. You'll probably have to put him on the spot, and it might not be fun, but I really think he needs to realize the reality of the situation, and together, hopefully you can come up with a plan. If not, you make the plan and show it to him. (That's how it tends to be at my house).

I'm rooting for you, Stephanie. Please try not to feel guilty. It isn't justified and doesn't serve any purpose. At this point try to only look forward. We can't keep beating ourselves up over the same thing, especially if we're taking steps to fix it.

Let me know how things go, please.